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Less than three weeks after the Currier House masters announced their resignation, Cabot House Masters Janice and James H. Ware sent an e-mail to House residents saying that they would step down at the end of this year as well.
The Wares, who have served as masters of Cabot for seven years, are the third House masters to resign this year, following Winthrop House Master Paul D. Hanson’s announcement in September and Currier House Masters William A. Graham and Barbara S. Graham’s announcement on Jan. 7.
Despite the unusual number of departures, Dean of the College Harry R. Lewis ’68 wrote in an e-mail that he does not think there is any connection between them.
“It’s not usual to have three Masters step down in one year, of course, but it’s also not usual to have zero in one year as happened last year,” Lewis wrote. “It all averages out to about one per year—there is no connection between these three departures.”
Ware called being a house master an “enormous privilege,” but said other commitments—like his academic deanship at the School of Public Health (HSPH)—have made it impossible for he and his wife to continue overseeing Cabot.
“Recognizing that there are only 24 hours in a day...we realize that the time has come to pass the torch to new masters,” the Wares wrote in their e-mail to Cabot residents last Thursday.
As a master, Ware said he saw his challenge as bringing academics into the primarily social environment of the House.
“We wanted the House to be a center for academic activity as well as social and cultural,” Ware said.
He cited the “faculty forums” that he organized, in which students joined members of the faculty in informal dinners, as an effort to encourage this academic interaction in the House.
Ware also implemented one of the first online tutor surveys in Cabot last year as part of the push to get more feedback on residential and non-residential tutors. 10 out of the 12 houses offered the survey this year.
Ware said he is proud that Cabot has won the intramural athletic competition between the houses—claiming the coveted Straus Cup—five times and came in second last year under his tenure.
He said he will try to instill the same sense of community at HSPH as he has among students in Cabot.
He said he will also work on a book about the design and analysis of statistical studies in addition to other research projects.
Cabot House Co-Master Janice Ware, who works as the Associate Director of the Developmental Center at Children’s Hospital, will focus her energy on expanding a program for research in developmental disabilities and establishing a partnership with the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT.
Cabot House Senior Tutor Steven Kargere said he will meet with Lewis next week to kick off the master search process.
Lewis said he will also meet with Cabot students next week, as he did with the students in Winthrop and Currier Houses, to solicit their input for the master search.
At that point, Kargere will assemble a selection committee of Cabot tutors, students and a member of the Senior Common Room.
“I just want to make it as diverse a group as possible,” Kargere said. “The Wares’ shoes will be hard to fill.”
Lewis said he hopes to complete all three master searchs by the end of March in order to “limit the period of understandable anxiety and uncertainty, and to provide a longer period of overlap to smooth the transition.”
He said he does not think finding enough qualified faculty members to fill the positions will be a problem.
“As we have already developed a good pool of candidates, we will be ready to begin the search process very quickly, and I don’t anticipate any difficulty in making three strong appointments,” Lewis wrote.
—Staff writer Emily E. Anderson can be reached at email@example.com.
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